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Balinese Kopi Luwak

Home > Bali > Travel | Tours | Coffee
by Pauline (subscribe)
Published April 1st 2013
A taste of the world's most expensive coffee
Tegal Sari Bali Coffee & Spices came highly recommended and I had the opportunity to visit the place in one of my travels to Bali. It is a coffee, cocoa and tea plantation not very far from Ubud town in Bali. The island is apparently famous for its excellent coffee especially kopi luwak which is mainly produced in the Indonesian Archipelago.

Bali, Kopi Luwak, Civet Coffee
Tegal Sari Bali Coffee & Spices in Ubud, Bali

The plantation attracts many tourists from all over the world, especially coffee lovers who are interested to see and taste the world's most expensive coffee called Kopi Luwak. Kopi is literally translated as coffee while Luwak means civet or more precisely the Asian Palm Civet (Paradoxurus hermaphroditus) native to Southeast Asia.

Bali, Kopi Luwak, Civet Coffee
Civet or Luwak

Civets are small mammals living in the trees and feed on berries and pulpy fruits. One of their favourite foods is the red, ripe coffee cherry which they eat all of the cherries and bean.

Bali, Kopi Luwak, Civet Coffee
Coffee berries

Then in their digestive tracts, fermentation occurs. The coffee beans finish the journey by passing through civets' intestines and defecate. After that, farmers will collect the still-intact beans from the forest floor followed by cleaning, roasting and grounding process just like any other coffee.

Bali, Kopi Luwak, Civet Coffee
An old and experienced lady roasting and drying the coffee beans

The plantation guide told me that some civets eat coffee cherries which contain better beans and the digestion process may improve the flavour of the coffee beans that have been eaten. Though the process seems to be interesting, it wasn't pleasant to look at the fecal matter and the coffee beans let alone imagining myself sipping the coffee. Nonetheless I was eager to try out kopi luwak at least once in my lifetime.

Bali, Kopi Luwak, Civet Coffee
Sample of Civet feces with embedded coffee beans

Visitors get a chance to savor different types of coffee, cocoa and tea at the tasting hut. The experts from the plantation are there to answer questions from curious visitors. They also make small batches of different drinks on the spot.

Bali, Kopi Luwak, Civet Coffee
Coffee, Cocoa and Tea for tasting

Tasting for all coffee, tea and cocoa drinks are free except for kopi luwak which costs Rp 40,000, equivalent to AUD3.95 for a small little cup. The taste of kopi luwak was described to have rich, heavy flavor with hints of caramel or chocolate while others described it to be earthy, musty and very smooth. As for me, long story short, I still prefer my usual Arabica coffee.

Bali, Kopi Luwak, Civet Coffee
Rp 40,000 for a small cup of Kopi Luwak

Before leaving the plantation, I walked around the spice garden where a variety of spices were on display including lemon grass, cinnamon sticks, white and black pepper, ginger etc.

Bali, Kopi Luwak, Civet Coffee
Cocoa beans

Though I didn't quite like Kopi Luwak, it was nonetheless an interesting place that's worth a visit.
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Why? Taste the world most expensive coffee
Where: Bali, Indonesia (Jalan Luwus - Perean Tengah Baturiti 82191, Indonesia)
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Your Comment
Pauline, I'm sure you mean well, but did you consider the civets that are used in this vile manner to produce this coffee? According to PETA Australia (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals) it is one of the cruelest practices on earth and they have a program to try to get it stopped. Please do not encourage people to support this awful practice. Check out PETA Autsrlia's website to see evidence of this and I'm sure you will change your mind.
by jpbou (score: 0|6) 2605 days ago
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